Archive to AR Immersive storytelling

Hive IT, the National Railway Museum and the University of Sheffield

Sheffield-based Hive IT specialise in developing and delivering captivating digital products and making technology accessible for any organisation. Their mission is to use the right tools & technology to make positive changes to the world we live in. 

This R&D project is a collaboration between Hive IT, the University of Sheffield and the National Railway Museum in York. The project will build on an existing proof of concept activity to co-create and user-test a story-driven augmented reality mobile experience for train passengers. The experience will incorporate National Railway Museum archival content to create an authentic, historically accurate, immersive in-train experience, that will engage aspiring visitors and audiences who may not have the resources or capability for an in-person visit, or who have not yet visited the Museum. 

The overall R&D challenge is to ‘turn museum archives inside-out’ by using them as the foundation for a story-driven AR experience, developing leading-edge immersive technology to deliver new forms of access to cultural heritage. The NRM is home to the national railway collection – more than a million unique objects from large vehicles to tea spoons that tell the human and technical history of the railways from their 1780s origins to today. 

This project will explore a repeatable and commercially scalable production process for using such a vast archive for the production of immersive storytelling experiences. This includes the creation of a technical production process and framework that inputs archive content and outputs a digital product.